Prof. Dr. Andreas Freytag takes a look at the outcome of this week’s EU summit in Brussels. According to Prof. Dr. Freytag, while the agreement of a fiscal pact by 25 of the 27 EU member states was good news, European leaders once again failed to address several key issues of the crisis.
As tensions rise over Iran’s nuclear ambitions, the European Union has ratcheted up its pressure on Iran with an oil embargo. Tehran is now threatening with an embargo of its own, while the United States leaves its threat of military action on the table and Israel worries about the clock running out of time to stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. Is 2012 the year where war becomes inevtiable? And what can Germany or the EU do to prevent it?
Rarely has one of the recent European crisis summits had as little impact on the public mood as the one just concluded in Brussels on Monday of this week. Reactions to the decision on the tight fiscal pact were generally muted. Most commentators on both sides of the Atlantic described the results… Read more >
In his essay Downgrades and Default, Alexander Privitera explains that while last week’s European downgrades may not have roiled markets, they have some European leaders fuming. Though some European politicians have begun pointing fingers across the Atlantic for the recent rating cuts, according to Mr. Privitera, the problem lies within Europe itself. Until an effective plan for dealing with Greece is put forth, the euro zone crisis will continue.
In this At Issue, Executive Director Jack Janes analyzes the aftermath of last week’s string of European downgrades by Standard and Poor’s. Like their American counterparts in last August’s U.S. downgrade, European leaders seemed quick to point fingers at those they felt were responsible for the rating cuts. However, the message from Standard and Poor’s made one thing very clear: the efforts to fix the Euro crisis are still inadequate. According to Dr. Janes, the lack of political will in Europe to realize the true core of the problem is limiting the ability to reach a consensus on how to solve it.
The specter of 2012 in the Mayan calendar has been used to suggest the end of the world is near, but what is more likely to come is much of the same from 2011.
What will the outcome of last week’s EU summit mean for the future of the UK’s position within the Union? According to Dr. Simon Green, Professor of Politics at Aston University, UK, it could spell disaster for Britain in the single market of the EU. In his essay entitled The Beginning of the End of the Road? Britain and the European Council meeting, 8/9 December 2011, originally published in Aston University’s Aston Centre for Europe blog, Dr. Green explains that Prime Minster David Cameron’s decision to exclude the UK from the EU’s new intergovernmental pact will alienate the UK from the Union more than ever before.
While the aviation sector had been exempt from the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), in January 2012 the EU ETS will be expanded to fully include international flights arriving at or departing from an EU airport. This AICGS Spotlight provides background information on the issue, implications for Germany, the United States, and transatlantic relations as well as potential future development.
On December 16, 2011, the American Institute for Contemporary Studies (AICGS) hosted a discussion on “European Energy Security: Achievements, Shortcomings, and Potential Improvements.” During the seminar, Mr. Arne Schröer, DAAD/AICGS Fellow, argued that not only does European energy policy have problems in identifying challenges and solving them, but also that Europe’s energy… Read more >
While the recent general outlook on the future of the European Union has been filled with excessive doom and gloom, it is largely misplaced, writes Non-Resident Fellow Almut Möller in a collection titled “What the EU Did Next.” There is still hope for the EU, but significant work needs to be done; turning the EU from a liability into a solution will be a difficult task yet one that needs to be tackled. This volume of essays from the German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP) focuses on the EU’s undervalued strengths and how these strengths can be used to revitalize parts of the EU agenda in an effort to refocus the EU for success in the future.